Jump to content
IGNORED

I'm seriously considering adding a sidecar - serious input appreciated


Recommended Posts

Beautiful rig! Who makes that sidecar? The design is an excellent match to the lines of the bike.

How long did it take to get the hang of driving w/ a sidecar? How much extra wear have you noticed (tires, bearings, etc.)? What would you look out for when buying a used rig? How difficult is it to switch mentally when you get on a 2-wheeler from the hack and vice versa?

 

I've been asking a lot of Q's on the USCA forum & between here & there - I think I have a pretty good grasp now on the differences in driving, the learning curve, and overall having a side car. I am going to look for an older bike I can learn one, I think - before I make any conversion on my Venture. Basically I've learned -

 

1. Once a bike is set up properly & modified for a sidecar, you can't really just remove the car and go back to 2 wheels very easy. Best to have a dedicated sidecar rig.

2. That car must be properly matched to the bike - to light it flies too easy ~ too heavy and it causes excessive wear on the engine & drive train & bearings.

3. If no class is available to teach sidecar techniques and I have to teach myself - go slow, buy a couple good books on driving a hack & practice a lot, especially turns.

 

I really appreciate all the info I have gotten from everyone. Right now, I think It's a matter of finding the right 1st rig and how much $$$ I want to spend to make it happen.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

No, I fell off a ladder in July and fractured some ribs - kinda put a stop to the quest for a bit. Other family matters pushed it off the front burner. But I did read the manual on the USCA site and I have a good idea what I want & what to look for now. So I'm still looking and fall can be a good time to pick up a bike. :fingers crossed: I'd like to find something close enough to WI I can go check it out in person. Thanks to you and everyone who helped answer my questions!

Link to post
Share on other sites

Ouch! Hope you are healing quickly. Fall is a good time to find a rig :)

No, I fell off a ladder in July and fractured some ribs - kinda put a stop to the quest for a bit. Other family matters pushed it off the front burner. But I did read the manual on the USCA site and I have a good idea what I want & what to look for now. So I'm still looking and fall can be a good time to pick up a bike. :fingers crossed: I'd like to find something close enough to WI I can go check it out in person. Thanks to you and everyone who helped answer my questions!
Link to post
Share on other sites
This is my Royal star with sidecar in Australia, it is a very wide setup, but handles beautifully out on the open road, would be happy to answer any questions for you.

[ATTACH=CONFIG]106684[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]106685[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]106686[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]106687[/ATTACH]

 

nice....but you got it mounted on the wrong side!:stickpoke:

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 5 months later...

It's good to see a sidecar thread again. I haven't been around on the site for a bit and need to get the Venture carbs rebuilt and the outfit rolling again. It's been too long.

 

Velorex sidecars. I love them to bits, but they were made to fit on 350cc two strokes, not 1200cc V-4s. In the UK we wouldn't dream of putting one on a bike over 400cc - a CX500 would not be suitable. From the pictures other sidecars are available. If you wait long enough there will be one in someone's garden. I've had to scrap or almost give away a few chassis in recent years because no-one wanted them. Get something heavy and strong enough to do the job - that does not mean a Velorex.

 

I wish I could supply you all with something, but postage is too much and y'all drive on the wrong side of the road.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Red1, I have not seen or followed this post. .... And, I have not read the above posts. (so you may have already bought one)

If you are still looking for a sidecar, Reggie Brewer in Orangeburg, SC bought one from member WES78 (or something like that) in Jackson MS about 3 years ago.

He had it painted to match his 2011 blue RSV.

It is available for sale but he has not been advertising.

Please PM me or him if you are interested. He was on this forum some time ago, I don't know if he still is.

 

Thanks, Mike Griswold in SC

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 months later...

Well, I came across a 2013 Ural that I bought for my first sidecar rig. Got a lot of input from folks here, on Sidecar.com forum & from Soviet Steeds. She seems to be well cared for, miles are low, price was good.

 

I took it out for my first training ride - man! What a difference between 2 wheels and having the car. Right turns took much more force than I expected, there's an inertia pull when accelerate or decelerate, or hit the brakes. This is a whole new deal. There is also no windshield on the bike - I had forgotten how much force the wind is at 55 mph with no windshield! I may have to fix that! Now the learning curve begins!

 

 

P1000362.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 5 weeks later...

Hi Red,

 

I just found this thread, I also have been looking at going to a side car for a while myself.....like yourself lots of decisions, buy a rig already done up, add a rig to the venture or look at a Ural. For me each has its own advantage. How are you liking the Ural, I think they are a very cool looking machine and even with some of the negative stuff I have read, I really like the idea of having one. I don't mind the maintenance that is required, in fact I like how simple they are. There is a fellow a couple hours from us that builds side cars and I have spoken to him at a couple bike shows about building one for the RSV, also searching the classifieds for any interesting rigs that are for sale.

 

Mike

Link to post
Share on other sites

I've only had it for a while, but so far, I like it fine. Most of the non-Urals w/ sidecar were above my price range for a newer set-up I wasn't sure I could get used to. Or they were on bikes that were 30+ years old. I decided to get this one because it was a newer machine & I got a decent price on it ($7500) ~ figuring I can re-sell it if I didn't like it (or it didn't work out) and not take a beating. They seem to hold their value pretty well. They are a basic machine - not a lot of electronics or "fangle-dangles" as my wife says. Mine is a 2013, the last year of the carburetor model. They have had issues with the new EFI (fuel injection) that came out in 2014. Mine has drum brake on the rear, disc up front & NOT a 2-WD. The powered sidecar wheel is really ONLY for off-road - I don't off-road a lot. I am getting a windshield for mine - I'm too old to fight that blast! Top speed is about 65 mph, so it's not a super-slab blaster! I also ordered a tonneau cover for the car - mine didn't come with one. And I added fender luggage racks. They all come with an actual reverse - which is nice!

 

Most of the bad rap you hear (low quality, lots of breakdowns) is from older Urals. Check out Soviet Steeds or Russian Iron forums - ask Q's, read the posts. I found mine on the Soviet Steeds Black Market - it was close enough I could go check it out in person. You can also go to Sidecar.com and check out that forum. Most of the guys said - buy the newest you can afford, preferably newer than 2011. They underwent a lot of upgrades in the years after 2010. You can read about the Ural changes here - http://www.crawfordsales.info/?page_id=54

 

Urals do require a bit more maintenance, because they are "old tech" - so you can't be afraid to get your knuckles greasy. As for learning to ride - it IS different. Cornering is slower - there is no leaning into it. Shifting & braking take some getting used to, too - but it's not bad. So far, it's been fun & I like it. My wife hasn't tried it yet (It's been "too cold" for her she says) but the dog is loving it! You can carry more stuff easier than on the RSV & drive on roads (gravel, sand, rain & snow) safer than on 2 wheels.

 

18216904_1533182836692285_6622508903299924366_o.jpgP1000418.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites

I have been to the Ural dealer located not too far from us and have liked what I have seen. I don't have a problem with the maintenance and I only do about 65 mph on the RSV anyways. Great picture of you and your dog in the sidecar, that is the one thing I would look forward to when we get ours.

 

Enjoy and thanks for the info.

 

Mike

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd keep looking for a used one. Check out the Soviet Steeds Facebook page and forum. I like the open sidecar of the Ural - not a fan of the "Jetsons" style full enclosed cockpits. If you like those, Sidecar.com had a few complete rigs for sale - mostly non-Urals. There was a '86 Wing in great shape for $5,500 I think. Good luck!

Link to post
Share on other sites

I am always looking for used ones but like you some are too old and some are just silly the amount of money that people want for them. There are 2 that I have found both within a 5 hour drive from our house, one is a Road Star with a motorvation side car, this is a cool looking rig and the other is a RSV with a Hannigan sidecar, not sure if I like the look of the Hannigan or not as it is kinda square looking from the back, but I love the idea of the RSV as the bike. Both bikes are low mileage which is good and I seem to be a Yamaha guy as my 3 bikes are all Yammy. Figure if I took the plunge I would sell my RSV to make the purchase a bit more affordable, and then ride one of the other two when I get the 2 wheel itch, actually it would be a good time to sell off one of the other 2 bikes as well. Thanks again for the info.

 

Mike

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 1 month later...

Well we found our sidecar, and guess what we also ended up with a 2013 Ural Gear Up, it is a nice rig, windshield for both the bike and the sidecar. As you said wow what a strange feeling the first few times riding or driving it. I am feeling more comfortable now, we actually took it up to Ontario meet n greet that happened this past weekend in Minden Ont. The comfort was better for my wife in the sidecar, then for me on the bike, but it was a blast.

 

The UDF that you hear about on Ural sites has been huge, these machine sure do attract a lot of attention when you stop.

 

Mike

Link to post
Share on other sites

Congrats on finding a hack! I have found the Soviet Steeds website & forum to be very helpful in answering any maintenance Q's that may crop up. Russian Iron also has a forum and other info. I've book marked a bunch of sites for parts, info, etc. - let me know if you need something.

 

I've got about 1000km in the saddle of mine now and have yet to have a major issue (knock on wood). It's been a blast to ride some of our dirt and gravel roads and be able to take the dog along. Watch the speed in the right hand turns. What's your user name on the other boards?

Annie_n_me1.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites
Congrats on finding a hack! I have found the Soviet Steeds website & forum to be very helpful in answering any maintenance Q's that may crop up. Russian Iron also has a forum and other info. I've book marked a bunch of sites for parts, info, etc. - let me know if you need something.

 

I've got about 1000km in the saddle of mine now and have yet to have a major issue (knock on wood). It's been a blast to ride some of our dirt and gravel roads and be able to take the dog along. Watch the speed in the right hand turns. What's your user name on the other boards?

 

I have also taken our dog out on a few rides, for the other forums same user name as here, stickhandle2.

My only concern with the Ural has been the brakes in wet weather, combined with the skinny tires these rigs have at times the stopping power is less then I am use to with my Venture and other bikes I have had.

 

Mike

Link to post
Share on other sites

But - the Ural is also much lighter so it doesn't take as long to stop. And while the tires are skinny - remember the "contact patch" - the small oval of rubber that is actually in direct contact with the road surface - for your Venture is likely not a lot bigger than the Ural - and you have 3 instead of 2 contact patches. AND - you can really break pretty hard on these rigs and they won't go into a front wheel or rear wheel skid like a 2 wheeler. I've locked up the rear brakes (on purpose when practicing) and it goes pretty straight. Same with the front. Practice HARD braking in an empty parking lot - you'll be surprised, I think.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

I have a Formula II on my 2000 Ventura. Got it from Motorvation Sidecars in Sibley, IA. They have different types but we felt the Formula II style fit the Ventura. The sidecar has its own breaking system which I have found was a good investment and helps on right-hand turns if you don't modify the front end, which I didn't.

 

It is a new experience and takes a few miles under the belt to become used to it. You will always miss the two wheels. I had to get one because the wife could not ride long distances anymore on the back. One thing, at 80 yrs it is nice to be stable when on freeways.

 

On local rides, our two labs take over and go with us.

 

Not sure how to download attachments or I would send some pics. Contact me via e-mail and I can send some to you.

 

labill

Link to post
Share on other sites

Forgot to mention. After I had the sidecar I found the power was not there. On some hills, etc the motor would have to work hard and many times would have to drop into 4th gear.

 

Addressed this on the site and our friends gave me the solution. I put in a VMax rear and it's like I never put the sidecar on.

 

Also, don't expect to get good gas mileage.

 

labill

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 1 year later...

Sidecars are fun! I truly enjoy, is it easy, No. But once you get the hang of it with a good set up, man it is a blast.

The only problem is when you stop for gas, restaurants, etc. people will come over and ask all kinds of questions, but I enjoy the conversations. Later-

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 years later...

Red1 I'm so glad you asked all the questions about sidecars. I've never driven one either. Tomorrow, I'm going to look at 2 different set ups,  bike complete with sidecars. Since I've never driven one, I'm hoping they will take me for a ride, so I can hear, and feel and hope to make a good decision. 

MJ, Labelle, Stick,  everyone else thanks for answering. Lots of valuable information here. I'm going to check out those other sites you mentioned also. 

I'm so glad I joined this site!

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...